New Documents: Alito Favors Increased Presidential Power

After reviewing the new documents released from the National Archives from Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito’s time during the Reagan Administration, People For the American Way President Ralph G. Neas had the following statement:

“Today’s documents show more evidence that Judge Alito favors sweeping presidential and executive powers over the people’s right to privacy. With President Bush under fire for authorizing wiretaps without warrants, the American people understand they need a justice on the Supreme Court who will protect their rights against abuses of power by their own government. Judge Alito does not meet that test.

“Time after time, he has come down on the side of government power against the rights of the individual. Before today we knew that he wrote a dissent saying it was okay to strip search a ten-year-old girl without a valid warrant. He approved FBI video surveillance of a private apartment without a warrant. He argued that the attorney general of the United States should have absolute immunity from claims brought by U.S. citizens illegally wire-tapped by their own government.

“Today we find more evidence that Judge Alito believes government officials should be able to order illegal wiretaps with no legal liability, and more evidence that he favors increased powers for the President and the executive branch. Indeed, Alito not only defers to executive power, but condones abuses of executive power.

“At a time when one party controls the White House and the Congress, the checks and balances provided by the courts – and especially the Supreme Court – could not be more important. The Supreme Court was designed to check abuses of power by the President, and protect the rights of individual citizens against the overwhelming power of their own government. Judge Alito’s record increasingly shows that he is not the man to play that role.”

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